Political participation be it the ability to vote and voice opinions or the

Political participation be it the ability to vote and

This preview shows page 66 - 69 out of 102 pages.

of gender empowerment. Political participation, be it the ability to vote and voice opinions, or the ability to run for office with a fair chance of being elected, plays a huge role in the empowerment of women. However, participation is not limited to the realm of politics. It can include participation in the household , in schools, and the ability to make choices for one. It can be said that this latter participation need to be achieved before one can move onto broader political participation. When women have the agency to do what they want, a higher equality between men and women is established. It is argued that microcredit also offers a way to provide empowerment for women. Governments, organizations, and individuals have caught hold of the lure of microfinance . They hope that lending money and credit allows women to function in business and society, which in turn empowers them to do more in their communities. One of the primary goals in the foundation of microfinance was women empowerment. Loans with low interest rates are given to women in developing communities in hopes that they can start a small business and provide for her family. It should be said, however, that the 66
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WOMEN EMPOWERMENT THROUTH ENTREPRENEURSHIP success and efficiency of microcredit and microloans is controversial and constantly debated. The growing access of the web in the late 20th century has allowed women to empower themselves by using various tools on the Internet. With the introduction of the World Wide Web , women have begun to use social networking sites like Face book and Twitter for online activism . Through online activism, women are able to empower themselves by organizing campaigns and voicing their opinions for equality rights without feeling oppressed by members of society. [10] For example, on May 29, 2013, an online campaign started by 100 female advocates forced the leading social networking website, Face book, to take down various pages that spread hatred about women. In recent years, blogging has also become a powerful tool for the educational empowerment of women. According to a study done by the University of California, Los Angeles, medical patients who read and write about their disease are often in a much happier mood and more knowledgeable than those who do not. By reading others' experiences, patients can better educate themselves and apply strategies that their fellow bloggers suggest. Many of the barriers to women's 67
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WOMEN EMPOWERMENT THROUTH ENTREPRENEURSHIP empowerment and equity lie ingrained in cultural norms. Many women feel these pressures, while others have become accustomed to being treated inferior to men. Even if men, legislators , NGOs , etc. are aware of the benefits women's empowerment and participation can have, many are scared of disrupting the status quo and continue to let societal norms get in the way of development. Research shows that the increasing access to the internet can also result in an increased exploitation of women. [9] Releasing personal information on websites has put some women's personal safety at risk. In
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